Scaffolding Students During Open-Ended Questions - Spiral Warmups

Scaffolding Students During Open-Ended Questions

Get results fast! Build stronger readers and writer with Spiral Warm-Ups.

This is the second post for scaffolding students during open-ended questions. And you can read part 1 here: 3 Ways to Use Open-Ended Questions.

You know very well that scaffolding is not about giving students answers. But what is it? How can it be done in ways that promote thinking and comprehension?

Scaffolding is coaching students to think in ways that help them construct meaning. Scaffolding students during open-ended questions can occur in many ways, here are a few to help during the open-ended warm-ups.

  1. Shared Reading. Instead of posting an open-ended projectable and asking students to read silently, use shared reading (read more here). The purpose here is to support decoding skills and reading fluency, so students can focus on making meaning from the text.
  2. Group Talk the Details. After reading the warm-up text, either alone or together, ask students to talk in their groups. Then prompt them by asking, “Can you recall the details?” This is a memory task to help students process information in their working memory prior to answering the comprehension question.
  3. Share the Details. After using any of these first two strategies, randomly call on several students to share out the details and make any connections to their background knowledge. This builds schema and gives you an opportunity to give clarifying feedback prior to asking the comprehension question.
  4. Write the Gist. In this strategy, students read the paragraph and write the main idea. This takes the processing one step beyond focusing on details. – it asks students to understand the text.

Next time you have an open-ended warm-up, do one or more of these strategies before asking the comprehension question, and students will have more success comprehending the open-ended questions in the warm-ups.

Not sure where to find the open-ended questions? Click the links below:

Join the free Word Study Membership

Increase Reading Levels. No-Prep.


Get Free Warm-Ups
>